Recipe by Bunny Mazonas
Rabbit is hard to come by these days, but if you're fortunate enough to have a local butcher who will supply more traditional meats like mutton, oxtail and trotters, ask him about rabbit. This recipe calls for the rabbit supplied skinned and gutted, but whole (many butchers often portion the rabbit up automatically). Rabbit meat is the leanest you will ever eat - pure protein and with a great, rich flavour.
- 1 rabbit, whole
- 1 cup sausage meat
- 1⁄2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon rosemary
- 1 cup white pearl onion
- 2 -3 large carrots
- 10 slices streaky bacon
- 3 cups small potatoes
- 1 pint stock (chicken or vegetable is fine or, if you are given the rabbit WHOLE, make up some rabbit stock!)
- 100 g lard
- 1 teaspoon flour
Directions See How It's Made
- If rabbit is not already prepared, wash it and trim away any skin and unwanted parts. Most rabbits come with the kidneys and other organs, regardless of whether they are prepared. Reserve these.
- Mix sausage meat and breadcrumbs together, kneading in the rosemary. Stuff the chest cavity of the rabbit with the stuffing, and continue down the torso, leaving a firm mound of stuffing from chest-groin.
- Wrap bacon rashers around rabbit, securing at the back with toothpicks, to seal stuffing inches.
- Roast rabbit on a medium/low heat for 1 hour, turning from one side to the other regularly and basting with any leaked juices.
- Meanwhile, boil potatoes in lightly salted water until firm, but starchy on the outide. Drain.
- Remove rabbit from roasting tray and set aside. Add lard to tray - once melted, toss in the pearl onions (whole), the carrots (roughly chopped into large pieces) and the potatoes. Toss vegetables in meat juices and lard, then replace rabbit on top. Roast a further 30 minutes, spooning over the hot lard as required, or until onions begin to blacken and potatoes turn golden and crisp.
- Using a slotted spoon, remove and set aside the rabbit and vegetables, allowing each spoonful to drain any juices back into the roasting pan.
- Pour stock into pan and scrape the bottom to lift up any stuck pieces of meat or vegetable, and to thoroughly combine the stock with the juices.
- Pour mixed stock and juice into a pot, adding a sprig of rosemary and the reserved rabbit organs. Place rabbit and vegetables back in over on a very low setting to keep warm.
- When stock reaches a rolling boil, mix the teaspoon of flour with a little water to form a paste, and add to the stock. Once thick and rich, taste and season to preference. Strain stock to remove organs and rosemary.
- Serve rabbit, surrounded with the roasted vegetables, and with the stock offered on the side as a gravy. Goes beautifully with redcurrant jelly.